Celtics, Grizzlies In The NBA Gambling Trifecta For Monday, January 23

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Monday’s NBA seven-game card is a little lackluster with the most exciting matchup being the Memphis Grizzlies at Sacramento Kings. Along with that game, I break down and make picks for the Celtics-Magic and Hawks-Bulls.

You can listen to the audio versions of these handicaps on my recently launched NBA Hoops At Lunch show on the OutKick Bets Podcast feed Monday-Friday.

(Buyer beware: It’s the “load management” era in the NBA and random injury news. NBA players are sitting out more games. It would behoove you to wait until the final injury reports before betting.)

Boston Celtics (35-13) at Orlando Magic (17-29)



Orlando is 2-1 straight up (SU) and 3-0 against the spread (ATS) in the regular-season series vs. Boston. The Magic swept the Celtics in a back-to-back in Boston December 16 and 18 so I like Boston to get revenge here.

The Celtics will be without starting PG, and reigning NBA Defensive Player of the Year, Marcus Smart but that could be “addition by subtraction” for Boston vs. Orlando.

Smart’s replacement — combo guard Derrick White — is a much better 3-point shooter than Smart. White also leads Boston in non-garbage time on/off net rating (nRTG) at +7.9, according to CleaningTheGlass.com (CTG).

Boston Celtics All-Star Jayson Tatum attempts a free-throw vs. the Orlando Magic at the Amway Center in Orlando, Florida.
Boston Celtics All-Star Jayson Tatum attempts a free-throw vs. the Orlando Magic at the Amway Center in Orlando, Florida. (Don Juan Moore/Getty Images)

The Magic are second in the NBA in defensive 3-point shooting percentage, which is a mirage. They allow the second-most wide-open 3-point-attempts in the league so Orlando is giving up good looks.

Boston has the sixth-highest rate of wide-open 3-point attempts in the league and is eighth in 3-point shooting percentage. “Wide-open 3s” are defined by the shooter having at least six feet of distance from the nearest defender.

Finally, no Smart on the floor puts the ball in Celtics All-Star Jayson Tatum‘s hands more. This season, Tatum is averaging 35.5 points per game (PPG) on 56.1% shooting with a +20.0 nRTG in two games vs. the Magic.

NBA Best Bet #1: Celtics -8 (-110) at DraftKings Sportsbook, up to -8.5

The Boston Celtics' odds at the Orlando Magic from DraftKings Sportsbook as of Monday, Jan. 23rd at 12 p.m. ET.
The Boston Celtics’ odds at the Orlando Magic from DraftKings Sportsbook as of Monday, Jan. 23rd at 12 p.m. ET.

Atlanta Hawks (24-23) at Chicago Bulls (21-24)



These teams are 1-1 SU however Chicago is 2-0 ATS despite playing on the second of a B2B in both games vs. the Hawks this season.

But, the Bulls have plenty of rest, playing only once since Jan. 15. Their previous game was a 126-108 win over the Detroit Pistons in Paris Thursday.

Since the beginning of last season when Chicago signed All-Star DeMar DeRozan, the Bulls are 4-2 SU and 5-1 ATS vs. Atlanta.

Both teams have similar tendencies but Chicago is more efficient. Per CTG, the Bulls have a better shot quality on both ends of the floor than the Hawks.

Chicago Bulls wing Zach LaVine and DeMar DeRozan at United Center in Chicago.
Chicago Bulls wing Zach LaVine and DeMar DeRozan at United Center in Chicago. (Michael Reaves/Getty Images)

Chicago All-Star Zach LaVine has played against Atlanta All-Star Trae Young 14 times in their careers. He is averaging 26.1 PPG on 52.0% shooting (45.2% from behind the arc).

Also, in the first two Hawks-Bulls meetings this season, DeRozan is scoring 31.0 PPG on 50.0% shooting with a +14.0 nRTG, 9.5 rebounds and 6.5 assists.

Finally, Chicago is a better rebounding team than Atlanta and the Bulls have a plus-net FT/FGA rate whereas the Hawks have a negative-net FT/FGA rate.

NBA Best Bet #2: Bulls moneyline (-110) at DraftKings Sportsbook, up to -125 before laying up to -2 with Chicago

The Chicago Bulls vs. the Atlanta Hawks from DraftKings Sportsbook as of Monday, Jan. 23rd at 10:30 a.m. ET.
The Chicago Bulls vs. the Atlanta Hawks from DraftKings Sportsbook as of Monday, Jan. 23rd at 10:30 a.m. ET.

Memphis Grizzlies (31-15) at Sacramento Kings (26-19)



This is the Grizzlies-Kings regular-season finale and Memphis is 2-1 SU and ATS in the first three. The Grizzlies are hitting more 3-pointers (14.0-10.7), grabbing more rebounds (49.7-44.0) and committing fewer turnovers (16.3-14.7) in those meetings.

Furthermore, Memphis’s aggressive style of attacking the paint and crashing the glass gives Sactown fits. The Grizzlies lead the NBA in paint PPG and the Kings are 28th in paint PPG allowed.

Memphis Grizzlies PG Ja Morant handles the ball during the game vs. the Sacramento Kings at FedExForum in Memphis, Tennessee.
Memphis Grizzlies PG Ja Morant handles the ball during the game vs. the Sacramento Kings at FedExForum in Memphis, Tennessee. (Justin Ford/Getty Images)

Memphis has the 10th-highest volume of field goal attempts (FGA) at the rim and most short-mid-range FGAs, per CTG. Sacramento is 26th in defensive field goal percentage vs. shots at the rim and 27th vs. short-mid-range jumpers.

Also, both teams are top-five in pace but the Grizzlies average more fastbreak PPG and the Kings have the third-worst defensive efficiency in transition.

NBA Best Bet #3: Grizzlies moneyline (-115) at DraftKings Sportsbook, up to -125 before laying up to -2 with Memphis

The Memphis Grizzlies' odds at the Sacramento Kings from DraftKings Sportsbook as of Monday, Jan 23rd at 1 p.m. ET.
The Memphis Grizzlies’ odds at the Sacramento Kings from DraftKings Sportsbook as of Monday, Jan 23rd at 1 p.m. ET.

You can listen to the audio versions of these handicaps on my recently launched NBA Hoops At Lunch show on the OutKick Bets Podcast feed Monday-Friday.

FOLLOW GEOFF ON TWITTER: @Geoffery_Clark

Listen to the ‘OutKick Bets with Geoff Clark’ podcast HERE.


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Written by Geoff Clark

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